How to train for Halter? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 05-25-2012, 12:24 AM Thread Starter
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How to train for Halter?

I have a wonderful 4yr old solid bay paint mate, that I'd love to attempt showing in halter classes. I have been working with her on leading and pivoting on her right hind in a turn, she does that wonderfully! But I'm having a tough time teaching her to square up. Anyone got suggestions that could help me get her squared up?
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post #2 of 7 Old 05-25-2012, 12:33 AM
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Repetition. Lots and lots of repetition.

Perhaps teaching a verbal cue would help.

Always remember that feeling of looking at a big, open country over the ears of a good horse, seeing a new trail unwind ahead of you, and that ever-spectacular view from the top of the ridge!!! Follow my training blog: http://robertsontraining.blogspot.com/
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post #3 of 7 Old 06-04-2012, 01:19 AM
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I hope this helps.

When teaching to square up, always do the back end first and then the front.
I use the cue 'set' and he'll square himself up without me touching him, I also have his show halter on and give pressure aids because in the ring you don't want to be saying "set" LOL!

Always make sure when training you have your show halter on.

I never let him do anything BUT halter when training with the halter on, i wont let him eat, have an itch.. nothing!

My boy has been self setting since he was a yearling, he was 'placed' in the correct spot as a weanling.

Proud owner of 2009 Paint Gelding 'Just Awesome' also known as Montana.
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post #4 of 7 Old 06-04-2012, 05:40 PM
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There aren't any pivots in a halter class. Do you mean showmanship?
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post #5 of 7 Old 06-05-2012, 06:01 PM
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For halter, you can set the feet by hand if you want. Like Go said, there are no pivots in Halter....only Showmanship. Halter is about walking toward the judge, trotting PAST the judge when he/she steps to the side, then a left hand turn past a cone so the judge can see the horse trot from the side, then into a head-to-tail line up. Set your horse up square....go the the end of your lead and stand smack dab in the middle of the horse's barrel to see if the front and back legs are correct...and then "show" your horse by standing at it's head and slightly out in front.

For training? Teach your horse to walk and trot quietly next to you and to stand quietly for long periods. Set the back feet first by working off of the off side foot. Then set the front. You do this by cueing with your hand...a slight up and back push or a slight up and forward pull and by pushing slightly the head away or toward you. My recommendation....teach the set up EVERY TIME you are leading the horse anywhere....to the paddock, from the paddock etc. Once your horse understands that pressure on the lead chain means move the feet, you can then get the square close and then move the feet by hand for a more exact and quicker square.
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post #6 of 7 Old 06-07-2012, 11:03 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you all! That makes sense. I figured while training for halter, I'd give showmanship a whirl, since it all goes hand in hand. And its a good skill for every horse to know. I really need to work with my mare on not wiggling and trying to rub her face all over me. If I can get her to show that would be fun, but if I don't show her, the training will be a good lesson in manners.
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post #7 of 7 Old 06-07-2012, 05:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SaddleStrings View Post
Thank you all! That makes sense. I figured while training for halter, I'd give showmanship a whirl, since it all goes hand in hand. And its a good skill for every horse to know. I really need to work with my mare on not wiggling and trying to rub her face all over me. If I can get her to show that would be fun, but if I don't show her, the training will be a good lesson in manners.

Work on the basics first....as the basics for showmanship training are what you do in halter....walk, trot, set up, and STANDING still. If she's trying to rub your face with her head, you are standing too close to her head. You need to be standing out in front of her and off to the side a tad. Go to youtube, and run a search for AQHA World Show halter...stuff like that, where you can watch an actual class, and see where the handler is standing.
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